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A prize inside

I said goodbye to an antique shop that sold cards yesterday, I said goodbye to a lot of things.

My daughter is moving out of her apartment, out of the town where she went to college, and moving to a new city with a new job. She's been in the work force for almost a couple of years, but this is the first time the job will utilize that degree that she toiled over for four years. She's already happier.

So this weekend is probably the last time I spent in her apartment, the last time eating at the restaurants in town, the last time driving past that college and in those familiar hotels. And it's the last time finding cards in that antique shop.

You've read about my vintage card discoveries in "the card bowl," a couple of times. This was my last opportunity.

We walked there, which is what we always do (parking in town is complex). But it was really hot and I'm at an age where walking is exercise and otherwise, how about we drive there?

Fortunately, the antique store was well-air-conditioned. This store features mostly jewelry and vintage clothes, but there's always a corner where somebody -- I never found out who -- is selling cards. Oh, he's selling books and stuff, too, but I never paid attention. There is a tall glass case of old cards, like '40s Bowman and Goudey and '50s Topps, mostly of Yankees, for prices I don't want to spend, especially on Yankees.

Beyond the glass case was where I found the bowl of cards each time. But this time there was no bowl. I kind of guess that would happen in this world of Every Card Will Make Us Rich.

However, there were a couple of different stacks of nine-pocket pages that read either "Mets, $6/page" or "Yankees, $6/page." The pages each contained nine cards ... of Mets or Yankees from the late 1980s. Weee. 1988 Mets, for 65 cents each. Oh boy.

But I spied something else in those pages. There were some '70s cards without a New York team theme. Most of them were '75 Topps, my all-time favorite set. There were also a couple of '76 Topps pages and one '73 Topps page that looked like the cards had been covered in the dirt and then left out in the sun. But the '75 and '76 ones were in decent shape.

Best of all those ones said $4 per page. You mean to tell me I can get cards from more than 10 years earlier than those worthless '80s Mets and Yankees for 2 bucks cheaper? I think somebody is rewarding the prudent collector here.

I grabbed four pages of '75s and one page of 76s, mostly for upgrades and to add to the last couple of giveaway packages I have to send out. Here is a reenactment of what I saw:

Decent shape, a few corner nicks and such, and appropriately priced.

Here is the '76 page I bought:

I had a choice of two different '76 pages. I picked this one because that Don Sutton card is in fantastic shape.

So, those weren't any '50s and '60s cards in a bowl like the last couple of trips, but I was happy enough. We walked back to my daughter's apartment. I didn't want to put the cards in the car because it had to be 100-plus degrees inside there and you know what blazing-hot pages do to cards stored in them.

So I took them into the apartment and then started pulling the cards out of the pages. As I did the '76 page, I noticed there was an extra card hidden behind the Larry Christensen card in the center. I hadn't noticed that in the shop.



A prize inside! I certainly didn't expect a superstar in with all those commons and semi-stars.

I've always liked this card, one of the best in the '76 set, and, yeah, I completed this set way back in the early days of this blog, but it's still a thrill finding cards from this time period.

And it was a great way to say goodbye to the shop and that town where I made trips for four years.

I am looking forward to finding some great card deals in a new town.


Good luck in the next town/city!
steelehere said…
1976 Topps is a sneaky good follow up to 1975 Topps (at least when it comes to the front of the cards). A good argument could be made that there are way more incredible photos in the 1976 set than 1975.
Nick said…
Stuff like this reminds me that I really need to find an antique shop near me. I know there's a couple, but I've never made the trek. With or without baseball cards, they seem like fascinating places.
bryan was here said…
It's rare that I leave an antique shop empty handed. Whether it's cards, cars or 45s, I can always find some fun things at the various antique malls within an hour's drive of me.
bbcardz said…
Congrats on picking up some nice 70's Topps cards. I always wonder why the photos in some cards are not straightened before being sent off to the printer (see the '75 Twitchell and Hairston cards here--anyone remember the 72 Topps McCovey?).

fwiw, Jerry Hairston's son, Jerry Hairston Jr. (former Oriole, Cub, Ranger, Red, Yankee, Padre, National, Brewer and Dodger) is currently a commentator on the Dodgers pre-game and postgame shows on Sportsnet LA. He is both highly knowledgeable (being a former player) and hilarious too. I wouldn't be surprised if Jerry Jr. ends up working for Fox Sports or ESPN down the road.
Jimetal7212 said…
Always a good day when a sneaky surprise like a Yaz ends up in your stack.
Dave said…
Great finding those hidden gems. I have a vintage consignment store that opened up near me in January...dude usually has a great assortment of stuff including the tout "Home of the .25 Baseball Card" a massive 4-row box chock full of all kinds of stuff. I have found many a treasure in there...even managed to meet the guy that stocks the kiosk. He purchases entire collections and flips what he does not want...but at very reasonable prices....always a fun trip.

Matt said…
Nice pickups! The Yaz was definitely a bonus treat!
Fuji said…
I really like Yastrzemski's 76T card. Nice looking shot. The Joe Rudi is cool too. Rudi, Rudi, Rudi!
Jafronius said…
Fun pickups, and congrats to your daughter on the new job and new place!
gregory said…
What a cool story. Maybe a little bittersweet, but cool nonetheless. Thanks for sharing, and congratulations to your daughter!
AdamE said…
My oldest just graduated High School. Kids growing up sure is bittersweet.